Remember the infamous movie in the late eighties called “Wall Street” where the egomaniac and ruthless takeover and scam artist Gordon Gekko, played wonderfully by the master actor himself Michael Douglas, takes a young aspiring stockbroker under his wing, played by Charlie Sheen, who’s also excellent in this Oliver Stone film, and some insider trading and other unethical things ensue?
Well, this movie was sort of a culmination of the multiple news stories on insider trading scams in news in the 1980′s and it may also hold true today in this day and age with all the hoopla we have going on around us and the seemingly iminent collapse of many banks and other financial institutions because of the greed and unscrupulous moves of the heads of these companies. I tried to sugar coat that, but that is in fact why we are finding ourselves in this unfortunate situation today and there is no way around that sad fact.
The movie has a famous line in it from Gekko’s character that “greed is good”, and that sentiment echoed true for a lot of the CEO’s and company heads that allowed the bundling of subprime mortagages into profitable (short lived, albeit) packages for investors to buy.
This is what led to a lot of the problems we are seeing today, but today we are unlucky enough to have many other factors working against our economy besides just the greedy moves of CEO’s and other people in charge. We also have the high gas price factor, the fact that there are too many homes and not enough buyers (too much building, not enough people to purchase in other words), and we also have the Iraq war going on.
Simultaneously we had the culmination of the bad mortgage debts happen all at once, so all the chips seemed to fall at the same time in this dire age. And what of employment? If the unemployment rate goes up significantly as well as an addendum to this crisis, we could see something akin to a depression, but of course nothing as bad as that since we do have certain safeguards in place to protect against that.